Wednesday, June 25, 2008

How Important is Self-Esteem?

Importance of Self-Esteem

Anyone who thinks Self-Esteem is not important should Google it. There are many sites on all aspects of self-esteem from questionnaires to programs on Self-Esteem. Even the US Department of Mental Health has pages on it. It is under the domain of mental health. It is vital for mental health to have a good dose of self-esteem.

Self- Esteem in the dictionaries give the following definitions - “belief in oneself“,” undue pride in oneself” (Webster) ;“good opinion of oneself” (Oxford)

Maslow, a humanistic psychologist in his book, Motivation and Personality wrote about the hierarchy of human needs and the pyramid structure of the needs with the physiological needs from the base, followed by security needs, then social needs, then Self-Esteem needs and at the pinnacle needs of self-actualization. So Esteem needs are near the top of the needs of every human person.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, is studied not only in psychology but also in education and nursing and other health disciplines. So is anyone born with low or high self-esteem? How is self-esteem formed?
It is formed through experiences - both positive and negative experiences; also formed by interactions with others.

When is self-esteem formed? It starts when we are born and it continues to adulthood. Some studies will state that it starts in the womb, as a baby in the mother’s womb resonates with the mother’s vibrations - loving vibrations, positive or negative ones as well.

Is it a learned behaviour? Is it evolving? Can a low self-esteem be changed? The answer to all these questions is Yes, Yes and again Yes. How can I be so certain? Well, I was among those with a low self-esteem and with some conscious effort, prayer and work, my self-esteem has risen to a positive one.

The dilemma of Self-Esteem is that we could have too much of it or too little and being at either end of the spectrum is unbalanced. The causes and effects of low self-esteem as well as recovering from them will be discussed in my next postings.

Why is Self- Esteem important? It is part of a healthy, wholesome person. Persons with a healthy dose of self-esteem have the ability to be joyful, hopeful, creative, set goals, achieve some of them and contribute to humanity in some way, unique to them.

Tomorrow we will visit the causes of poor self-esteem!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think of healthy self-esteem as a lack of negative self-esteem. Then there's self-efficacy (see Albert Bandura).

Good topic! I look forward to your posts!